Monday, 31 December 2012


The weather has been so awful over Christmas that we have not been able to go for any walks.  We have had one trip out, though.  We went to Heartlands, which is a new heritage centre at Pool near Redruth.  It was established because Cornish tin mining has World Heritage status which brought funding with it.  At the moment it is a slightly strange place and I gather this is because the original 'vision' was of a new town with lots of housing surrounding a heritage centre.  Of course, when the housing market collapsed the developers lost interest and the result is that there is a large site with acres of space but not much on it.

Good use has been made of the existing buildings and there is an interesting museum inside but you do need to have an interest in tin mining, or at least mining in general, to appreciate it.  It is a great place for children as there are plenty of activities for them and on the day we went, which was of course very wet, there were a lot of families keeping out of the rain.

I did not like to take photos inside although there was nothing to say you couldn't.  The cafe is situated in the former timber shed with the tables divided by large lathes and other pieces of machinery.  This photo is of the boiler for the electric compressor house which was built in 1909 and operated from 1909 until the 1970s.  I also found one or two interesting details but I really think this is a place to take a sketchbook rather than a camera.

This is rust on the boiler above and the one below is the side of a mine chimney that still stands in the middle of the site.

There are also a number of what I suppose you call units.  The idea is that they should be occupied by artists so we were a bit surprised to find that one of them is the Camborne Registry office!  Only about half of them are currently occupied but one person has their marketing well worked out.

Heartlands is situated in a large area of mining history.  I thought I had written about the Great Flat Lode trail when we walked there a couple of years ago but I could not find a posting.  However, I have found my file of photos and think I will do a separate post on that as it is a very interesting area.  I was glad I had been there when I was studying the diagrams of mine shafts in the Heartlands museum.

So is a trip to Heartlands worth it?  Yes, if you are interested in mining or are trying to entertain young children.  There is a great adventure playground and we reckon that the place will look much more 'lived-in' when the tree has grown up.  If you are holidaying in Cornwall and it rains there is not much to do that is indoors so this could be a good choice.  And it is very accessible from the A30.

1 comment:

  1. My great grandfather was a miner in Camborne as were many of the family back then so I found your post very interesting. We went to Geevor last time we were down but have yet to get to Heartlands. I hope they succeed in these difficult times.